YOU might disagree, but hear me out on this. Money does not motivate employees.
In 1964, The Beatles sang "Money Can't Buy Me Love", and it certainly won't buy you loyalty or team motivation.
And yet, when I am running a seminar on how managers can motivate their staff, some managers come back at me with statements such as:
My people are only interested in the money."
"That's why they come to work."
"Sales people are motivated by money, that's why we pay them commission and bonuses."
"You try reducing their money and see what happens."
More than dollars and cents
Let me just say that if you want to become a successful motivational manager, please accept that for the majority of employees, money is not a motivator!
Psychologist Frederick Herzberg developed his "Two Factor" theory in 1959 and established that money is not a motivator. However, if it is inadequate, then it can be a de-motivating factor. In other words, low pay can adversely affect job performance.
If you were able to increase the salary of your employees by $5,000, I am sure they would be really pleased and motivated to do well - but for how long?
I reckon that within a couple of months, that extra $5,000 would be accepted as the norm with virtually no effect on motivation. And don't think it matters if it was $10,000 - after a while, it wouldn't make a difference.
Admittedly, there are people who are motivated purely by money; however, they tend to be in the minority.
The majority of employees are motivated by other factors and these are often more easily delivered than extra money. Many managers are unable to raise the salary paid to their employees as this is usually decided by company policy.
Employees can be motivated by several factors in relation to their work. Here are three things you can do to make their jobs more interesting.
1. Give them more responsibility by:
Giving them some of your tasks;
Asking them to train or mentor another member of your team;
Asking them to sit in occasionally on management meetings; and
Giving them further training.
2. Give them feedback and appreciation for what they do by:
Buying the occasional gift;
Letting them have time off work;
Presenting them with gift vouchers; and
Sending them personal thank-you letters.
3. Make them feel "in on things" by:
Letting them attend meetings and conferences if they don't already;
Letting them run a team meeting;
Listening to their opinions on how to run the team; and
Listening to their feedback.
I am sure you can add several other things to these lists and put them to the test right away. It takes effort on your part, but your reward will be a high-performing, motivated and united team of people working with you.